Most planned communities and condominium communities in Arizona are governed by restrictions set forth in the Conditions, Covenants and Restrictions (CC&R's) or other governing documents of the homeowners association (HOA) for the community. The community documents that establish the rules of the association are generally binding on the homeowners and residents, but the Arizona legislature has passed laws the limit some of the things that can be prohibited by an HOA. To the extent the association documents conflict with these statutes the statute will prevail and the HOA will not be entitled to enforce the prohibition.
A.R.S. § 33-1808 addresses many of the limitations on the prohibitions that can implemented by an HOA.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(A) - Display of Flags
Arizona Revised Statute Section 33-1808 subsection A addresses certain flags that may be displayed by a homeowner without prohibition by an HOA. This subsection states:
A. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit the outdoor front yard or backyard display of any of the following:
1. The American flag or an official or replica of a flag of the United States army, navy, air force, marine corps or coast guard by an association member on that member's property if the American flag or military flag is displayed in a manner consistent with the federal flag code (P.L. 94-344; 90 Stat. 810; 4 United States Code sections 4 through 10).
2. The POW/MIA flag.
3. The Arizona state flag.
4. An Arizona Indian nations flag.
5. The Gadsden flag.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(B) - Rules Governing Display of Flags
Notwithstanding the language of subsection (A), the statute does allow the Association to adopt reasonable rules governing the display of the permitted flags. This section states:
B. The association shall adopt reasonable rules and regulations regarding the placement and manner of display of the American flag, the military flag, the POW/MIA flag, the Arizona state flag or an Arizona Indian nations flag. The association rules may regulate the location and size of flagpoles, may limit the member to displaying no more than two flags at once and may limit the height of the flagpole to no more than the height of the rooftop of the member's home but shall not prohibit the installation of a flagpole in the front yard or backyard of the member's property.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(C) - Display of Political Signs
Subesction C limits the ability of an HOA to prohibit the display of political signs, but does allow for certain restrictions to be implemented by an HOA:
C. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit the indoor or outdoor display of a political sign by an association member on that member's property, except that an association may prohibit the display of political signs earlier than seventy-one days before the day of an election and later than three days after an election day. An association may regulate the size and number of political signs that may be placed on a member's property if the association's regulation is no more restrictive than any applicable city, town or county ordinance that regulates the size and number of political signs on residential property. If the city, town or county in which the property is located does not regulate the size and number of political signs on residential property, the association shall not limit the number of political signs, except that the maximum aggregate total dimensions of all political signs on a member's property shall not exceed nine square feet. For the purposes of this subsection, "political sign" means a sign that attempts to influence the outcome of an election, including supporting or opposing the recall of a public officer or supporting or opposing the circulation of a petition for a ballot measure, question or proposition or the recall of a public officer.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(D) - Display of Cautionary Signs
Subsection D addresses the display of cautionary signs regarding children, which must be permitted subject to certain restrictions:
D. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit the use of cautionary signs regarding children if the signs are used and displayed as follows:
1. The signs are displayed in residential areas only.
2. The signs are removed within one hour of children ceasing to play.
3. The signs are displayed only when children are actually present within fifty feet of the sign.
4. The temporary signs are no taller than three feet in height.
5. The signs are professionally manufactured or produced.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(E) - Playing in the Streets
As dangerous as it may sound, A.R.S. § 33-1808(E) requires that an HOA refrain from prohibiting children from playing in the streets, as long as the posted speed limit for the street is twenty-five miles per hour or less:
E. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit children who reside in the planned community from engaging in recreational activity on residential roadways that are under the jurisdiction of the association and on which the posted speed limit is twenty-five miles per hour or less.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(F) - For Sale and For Rent Signs
Subsection F limits an Association's ability to prohibit or charge a fee for placing for sale or rent signs on a property, but it does allow the Association to implement certain restrictions on the size and implementation of such signs:
F. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit or charge a fee for the use of, placement of or the indoor or outdoor display of a for sale, for rent or for lease sign and a sign rider by an association member on that member's property in any combination, including a sign that indicates the member is offering the property for sale by owner. The size of a sign offering a property for sale, for rent or for lease shall be in conformance with the industry standard size sign, which shall not exceed eighteen by twenty-four inches, and the industry standard size sign rider, which shall not exceed six by twenty-four inches. This subsection applies only to a commercially produced sign, and an association may prohibit the use of signs that are not commercially produced. With respect to real estate for sale, for rent or for lease in the planned community, an association shall not prohibit in any way other than as is specifically authorized by this section or otherwise regulate any of the following:
1. Temporary open house signs or a member's for sale sign. The association shall not require the use of particular signs indicating an open house or real property for sale and may not further regulate the use of temporary open house or for sale signs that are industry standard size and that are owned or used by the seller or the seller's agent.
2. Open house hours. The association may not limit the hours for an open house for real estate that is for sale in the planned community, except that the association may prohibit an open house being held before 8:00 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m. and may prohibit open house signs on the common areas of the planned community.
3. An owner's or an owner's agent's for rent or for lease sign unless an association's documents prohibit or restrict leasing of a member's property. An association shall not further regulate a for rent or for lease sign or require the use of a particular for rent or for lease sign other than the for rent or for lease sign shall not be any larger than the industry standard size sign of eighteen by twenty-four inches on or in the member's property. If rental or leasing of a member's property is not prohibited or restricted, the association may prohibit an open house for rental or leasing being held before 8:00 a.m. or after 6:00 p.m.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(G) - Door to Door Political Activity
Subsection G limits restrictions on door to door political activity:
G. Notwithstanding any provision in the community documents, an association shall not prohibit door to door political activity, including solicitations of support or opposition regarding candidates or ballot issues, and shall not prohibit the circulation of political petitions, including candidate nomination petitions or petitions in support of or opposition to an initiative, referendum or recall or other political issue on property normally open to visitors within the association, except that an association may do the following:
1. Restrict or prohibit the door to door political activity from sunset to sunrise.
2. Require the prominent display of an identification tag for each person engaged in the activity, along with the prominent identification of the candidate or ballot issue that is the subject of the support or opposition.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(H) - No Restrictions on Number of Candidates or Issues Supported
Subsection H of this section clarifies that in addition to the other prohibitions set forth in the section, an HOA may not restrict the number of candidates or issues that a homeowner may support:
H. A planned community shall not make any regulations regarding the number of candidates supported, the number of public officers supported or opposed in a recall or the number of propositions supported or opposed on a political sign.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(I) - Quality of Signs
When it comes to political activities, it is not surprising that the legislature has seen fit to ensure that there are minimal to no restrictions on a homeowner's exercise of his or her political will. Subsection I clarifies that an Association may not place any restrictions requiring that political signs be commercially produced:
I. A planned community shall not require political signs to be commercially produced or professionally manufactured or prohibit the utilization of both sides of a political sign.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(J) - Overriding Subsection G
The one apparent restriction that may apply to political activities is that the allowance of door to door canvassing for candidates or issues may be limited if the community already restricts access to the community:
J. A planned community is not required to comply with subsection G if the planned community restricts vehicular or pedestrian access to the planned community. Nothing in this section requires a planned community to make its common elements other than roadways and sidewalks that are normally open to visitors available for the circulation of political petitions to anyone who is not an owner or resident of the community.
A.R.S. § 33-1808(K) - Penalties for Violating Subsection F
Although penalties for violating any of the other prohibitions of A.R.S. Section 33-1808 are not enumerated, subsection K provides for a specific penalty for violating subsection F:
K. An association or managing agent that violates subsection F of this section forfeits and extinguishes the lien rights authorized under section 33-1807 against that member's property for a period of six consecutive months from the date of the violation.